With the general election set to take place later this year, Labour’s Mansion Tax policy is once under scrutiny, writes Richard Carr.
UK MPs favour higher rate council tax
It’s fair to say that the response to the Labour party’s Mansion Tax proposals, since the announcement last year, has been negative. Although many believe there is a need for changes to the tax system, Mansion Tax is not seen as the way forward.
Richard Carr, a commercial and residential development consultant, is strongly against Labour’s proposals, but is of the opinion that a reform to the tax system is needed.
The latest proposals from UK MPs on reforming annual property taxes on high value homes would be to introduce additional higher rate council tax bands.
69% of MPs were in favour of the idea, whilst three quarters agreed that a reform to the current council tax system was required.
Labour MPs split on Mansion Tax
The British Property Federation commissioned the aforementioned survey and also did a poll amongst Labour MPs regarding the introduction of Mansion Tax, should the party gain power in May.
Interestingly, 40% of the party’s MPs felt that reforms to council tax were more beneficial than Mansion Tax, whilst only 56% felt that Mansion Tax would be preferable.
Labour’s opponents were also strongly against their tax proposals with 89% of Lib Dems and 92% of Conservative MPs against the idea.
Mansion Tax is a gimmick
Ian Fletcher, Director of Policy at the British Property Federation, said that the polls showed an urgent need for council tax reform. He said: “The majority of MPs recognise that basing council tax on 1991 house prices is simply unsustainable.
“The mansion tax is a political gimmick that is more about the narrative of rich vs the rest than anything else. Reforming council tax through a revaluation and raising revenue through adding more council tax bands would restore fairness to the council tax system and be better for the country as a whole.”
Changes needed, says Richard Carr
Richard Carr believes that the council tax banding system has always been absurd and that there needs to be several more bandings. Also, he believes that Mansion Tax is a typical ill thought out piece of Socialist clap trap that will involve a new department in each council to administer it.